HARRISON, N.Y. – A near collision between two planes at Westchester County Airport Sunday night is being investigated by the Federal Aviation Administration.
The near-miss occurred as one plane was taking off and another landed, officials said.
“Preliminary information indicates that the air traffic controller responsible for departing and arriving aircraft cleared a single-engine, general aviation aircraft for take-off and also cleared another single-engine, general aviation aircraft to land on a different, intersecting runway,” said FAA spokesperson Arlene Salac.
She said FAA procedures require that the departing plane be through the intersection before an arriving plane reaches a runway.
“The landing aircraft executed a shorter approach than expected and landed just before the departing aircraft had cleared the intersection,” said Salac. “The FAA is investigating how the sequencing of the aircraft resulted in the departing aircraft not meeting the required clearance through the intersection.”
Airport officials said the matter was for the FAA to handle, but mentioned how they heard about the incident from the pilot who was departing at the time of the 7:19 p.m. incident.
“We weren’t told anything about it until one of the pilots mentioned it to our airport operations people this morning [Wednesday] and said that on Sunday, at about 7 p.m., he was taking off and then as he got airborne he noticed a plane very near him landing," said Donna Greene, deputy communications director for Westchester County.
Salac said that airport facility managers would be sharing “the preliminary findings of the incident with all personnel for situational awareness, and will review the procedures involved to ensure a safe operating environment.”